Sunday, 6 February 2011

Apple Sauce Cake

this is probably one of the prettier cakes i've made :) in an attempt to pull myself out of the winter blues i made this fruity number, recipe of course from the hamlyn cookbook. i love apple cake, but i've never had it made this way, and i think the cinnamon is a must, if you don't like cinnamon you can just leave it out, but i feel that you would lose a little something from the flavour, as the cinnamon complements the apples so well. you really do need cooking apples for this, as they mush down so easily, eating apples hold their shape for too long, you wouldn't be able to make as a good an apple sauce from them.
cooking apples have a funny waxy skin that makes them quite difficult to peel and chop without slipping out of your hands - and you really don't want that as it can become quite dangerous, you don't want a sharp knife slipping out of your hands at any time. to solve this problem, i make a little cut in the side, to reveal the apple flesh, which seems to make it easier to peel, if you have a starting point. to chop the apples evenly, slice off a bit from the bottom, to make a flat base to rest the apple on.
i had just finished the basic cake mix and thought 'this is too thick - it can't be right!', and then i realised it was because i hadn't added the apple sauce in yet, i added that in, and it loosened up the batter to what seemed to be the right texture to pour into the greased tin.
now, i am certainly not an arty kind of person, but i am very proud of this arrangement, before i started it, i could almost certainly see this as something i would muck up. so this seems to be a step in the arty direction!
its not a very tall cake - but it makes it up in flavour. i think its because you put the apples on top, that it restricts the rising process, but nevertheless, it looks so pretty i don't think it would look as nice if it were a tall cake.

2 cooking apples, each about 250g
2 tbsp water
some lemon juice
250g white bread flour
2 1/2 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp grated nutmeg
150g butter
175g caster sugar
3 eggs, beaten

peel, core and slice the apples.
put half the apples in a pan with the water, and simmer until mushy.
put the rest in a bowl, with cold water and lemon juice.
cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
add in alternate spoonfuls the egg and the flour, baking powder ginger, nutmeg and half the cinnamon until its all mixed in.
add the apple sauce and mix thoroughly.
pour into a greased round tin, and arrange the rest of the apple in circles on the top.
sprinkle with the rest of the cinnamon and some sugar.
place in the oven at 180 degrees for 35-40 minutes until brown and crisp on top.

serve with a dollop of thick custard. yums.

sarahh xxx

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